March 17th, 2020
While the Public Health Agency of Canada continues to assess the risk as low for Canada, we seek to minimize transmission in the community by limiting close contact with others at this time. In order to prevent further spread in Vancouver and Canada, UBC will be transitioning to online classes for the remainder of the term effectively Monday, March 16th, 2020.
UBC is also beginning a three-week pilot of remote working arrangements for faculty, staff, graduate students, post-doctoral fellows, and student employees, and therefore is asking these employees to work from home where possible. Please contact your professor or manager individually if you need to make alternate arrangements for work during this time.
In addition, in accordance with a recommendation from Provincial Medical Health Officer Dr. Bonnie Henry , the BC Centre for Disease Control, Ministry of Health and Vancouver Coastal Health, the university is cancelling all on-campus and off-campus events with more than 50 people (including sporting events), whether indoors or outdoors, that are organized by students, faculty and staff. More information here.
As of March 12, 2020, The Office of the Provincial Medical Health Officer, BC Centre for Disease Control and Ministry of Health has advised the following:
- Students, faculty, staff or visitors who have travelled outside Canada (including the United States) after March 12 should stay home or self-isolate in their residence*/room alone for 14 days, immediately on their return. They should monitor themselves daily for symptoms (fever, cough, muscle aches, difficulty breathing).
- Students, faculty, staff or visitors who have been laboratory tested for COVID-19 should stay home or self-isolate in their residence*/room alone, until their test results are known.
- Students, faculty, staff or visitors who have been in close contact with someone who has been diagnosed with COVID-19 by laboratory testing should stay home or self-isolate in their residence*/room alone for 14 days after their last encounter. Individuals should monitor themselves daily for symptoms (fever, cough, muscle aches, difficulty breathing).
- This does not apply to travellers who have returned to Canada up to or before March 12. (Previous mandated self-isolation requirements for travellers returning from Hubei Province, China, Iran, and Italy remain in effect.)
Those who develop symptoms during the 14-day monitoring period should immediately self-isolate (stay in a room that is not shared with anyone else) and call their healthcare provider or the provincial health line at 8-1-1 to discuss any need for testing and follow up.
A new toll-free phone line has also been established for Canadians (1 833 784 4397) to answer general questions about COVID-19.
For information on how UBC continues to monitor the development of the situation, including resources, click here.
Additional updates from the department to come.